Q and A with Anthony Davidson
The French Grand Prix was a very short event for Anthony Davidson and he and Tonio Liuzzi made contact at the first turn. Putting the race at Magny Cours behind him, Davidson looks forward to the British Grand Prix and reiterates his aim for the season - points.
Anthony, how are you feeling?
"I am feeling good about my performances at the races so far. I am at the level where I wanted to be and achieved the results that I wanted to have. Without a little bit of bad luck here and there I would have had points in the bag, so I have taken even more pressure off myself in that respect. I am looking forward to the rest of the season and getting even more out of myself in the races to come."
So is being a full time Formula One racing driver what you expected?
"In many ways 'yes', because obviously as the Friday driver I got to see how the whole race weekend would unfold. Working alongside experienced drivers like Jenson, Rubens, Jacques and Olivier taught me a lot and I saw what they had to go through on and off the circuit, so I was pretty much prepared for that. It is good fun to be racing again; I had forgotten that part, just how fun the wheel to wheel combat is. To be doing that again is a real pleasure. If there was anything that I wasn't expecting from this year on top of all the pressure it would have been a bit tough but it has been as easy to adapt to becoming a race driver from a test driver as I thought it might be."
What do you like about your job and are there any aspects that you do not like?
"The racing without a doubt is the best part! I don't think that there is anything I don't like. I think I would have given up racing a long time ago if I didn't like any aspect of it. There is obviously sometimes frustration from not being fast enough and wanting to be further up the grid, but that's only natural and every driver feels like that, if you are not P1 all the time."
Talk us through the challenges of a lap of Silverstone, our next stop on the calendar for the 2007 British Grand Prix?
"Silverstone is a great track. It is one of the older circuits on the calendar and it has a lot of character. Basically the first sector is what it is all about. If you can get this right you are going to get a pretty decent time even if you don't drive the second half of the lap that well. The first sector is where you can make or break the lap. It is easy to throw time away around Copse, the first corner, Maggots and then Becketts, the series of chicanes that follow, you can easily gain or lose four tenths and sometimes it's hard to figure where it has all gone or where it's come from."
It is a flowing, high speed part of the track; Copse used to be taken in seventh gear, I am not sure about now with these new tires, but it is a 'ballsy' part of the track, so it pays to be bold around that sector. The rest of the track is average and has a more man-made, but technical, feel to it. I know that the whole track is man-made but the first sector flows so well and feels so natural. From this sector the rest of the track, like round near the Clubhouse, it's for the fans; it slows the cars down so that the fans get a good view of the cars. But as a driver it can be a frustrating part of the track because it is slow speed and the car doesn't work well there as you have no downforce working for you, so it is an interesting circuit combining the very high speed and the low speed."
We are half-way through the 2007 season now, what are your hopes and expectations for the remainder of the year?
"To score some points! I should have some in the bag by now after Canada, but that was not meant to be and I am sure that I am close to doing it. I can feel it coming. I was 11th again in Indy and have always been knocking on the door of the points scoring positions. I am waiting for another weekend like I had in Bahrain or Indy where it all came together, but with a little bit more luck on my side. And you do need the helping hand of luck from the other teams to allow you the opportunity to score some points, because when you are not one of the top four teams it is very difficult to do so without them faltering. But we are always there, we are nearly always finishing. We have a low attrition rate in our team and I think that the time will come for me soon." Super Aguri Honda